Public Health Risk Averted As Nearly Three Tons Of Food Seized

Guardia Civil Avert Health Risk

Two and a half tons of canned food Seized. Credit:

THE public’s perception of canned food is generally positive owing to its hygienic production and longevity, but a recent investigation has prompted caution.

In a shocking police investigation in Cantabria, a large-scale illegal canned food operation has been uncovered which raised serious health concerns.

The Guardia Civil, in their recent ‘Sarda’ operation, apprehended a man, accused of jeopardising public health by producing and selling unregulated canned food.

Illegal Canning Operations Exposed

Investigations led the Guardia Civil to suspect illegal canning facilities in Cantabria. During a surveillance operation, officers intercepted 10 boxes containing 220 tins of tuna and 12 tins of anchovies. These were being delivered to a canning factory, highlighting the scale of the operation.

A subsequent raid on the production site led to the seizure of 131 boxes with approximately 4,100 jars of preserved tuna.

The site lacked basic sanitary measures, a health registration, and an activity license, which constitutes a huge violation of food safety regulations.

Health Risks And Legal Action

Analysis of the confiscated goods revealed alarming health risks. The histamine levels in the preserves were found to be over 77 per cent above the safe limit.

This prompted the Guardia Civil to seek an expert report on potential health risks for consumers.

High histamine levels can cause severe allergic reactions, including rashes, hives, nausea or vomiting, or even lead to acute lung edema, heart problems or neurological respiratory failure.

The producer, upon verification of these health risks, was arrested for a crime against public health. Additionally, the factory acquiring these illegal preserves faced legal consequences for violating EC Regulation 853/2004, which mandates specific hygiene standards for animal-origin foods.

Widespread Impact And Consumer Warning

This incident resulted in the seizure of over 2.5 tons of unsafely prepared food, intended for distribution without health controls.

The Guardia Civil and health inspectors have issued warnings to consumers about the potential dangers of such unregulated food products.

The suspect sold directly to at least one canning factory and also directly to the public from stalls at popular markets.

Consumers are urged to remain vigilant about the origins and safety standards of their food, particularly when purchasing canned goods.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.